Any one who knows me as a poet, knows how much I hate using clichés. But, in order to make this point 10000% relevant, I will use one that we can also AGREE with: “time is money.” That pesky metaphor that places financial value on an intangible item.
How many times have you been running late or waiting for someone or an event to start that is “running late?” it appears that we will get a lesson in various metaphors as well. Because now, our “intangible” has physical capabilities – Time is probably out chasing your money…who knows(?)
Enough with the metaphoric introduction, because by now, you get the point that I am leading up to, all you require is the reason I am (about to say what I am) saying. Ok. Here it is.
I will take a page from some of my business experiences and apply the information accordingly. When making an appointment with ANY client, especially NEW clients, require them to pay a deposit for the time and services they wish for you to render.
This way, they have committed themselves to your craft and abilities. And make sure that you have the following readily available:
• Contracts: detailing the specifics of the services to be rendered and ALL expectations as well as EXCLUSIONS.
• Policy/Policies: Have them in plain view or readily available to give to your customer(s). Your policies should give specific details and conditions as they may pertain to refunds, credits, cancellations, “failure to show” and returns.
• Release Forms: Limited, full and conditional releases can be customized to match your contractual obligations and expectations and offer additional protections.
Once an appointment is set. Both parties should arrive ON TIME or have the decency to call if “running late” or not going to show. Conditions for cancellations should be specified in your policy and contract.
• Value of time: It took years to master your craft and the knowledge that comes with it. You may have taken (paid) classes, purchased and read millions of paragraphs on the topic or had someone become a mentor to you as you learned through trial and error. Whatever path was chosen, it was done on YOUR time, right?
So, why not put a price on your time? Your level of skill? Besides, it is you that is providing the service and making time to take time out of your already busy schedule to do SOMETHING for someone who should be (if not expected to be) respectful of your time. Agreed?
So, in closing. And I do not wish to take up much more of your intangible irrecoverable…
Consider why you do what you do and who benefits from it. And in the meantime, always be considerate of yours, mine and their time.
You can lose more than time while waiting on that metaphoric bus to come back.
k/d/morris – poet/photographer